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PRINTER'S NO. 1848
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE BILL
No.
1448
Session of
2017
INTRODUCED BY CUTLER, MILLARD, GREINER, PICKETT, B. MILLER,
SOLOMON, HICKERNELL, JAMES, TOPPER, FEE, V. BROWN, KAUFFMAN,
PEIFER, OBERLANDER, PHILLIPS-HILL, WARD, SAYLOR, ROEBUCK,
HILL-EVANS AND ZIMMERMAN, MAY 25, 2017
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION, MAY 25, 2017
AN ACT
Amending the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L.30, No.14), entitled "An
act relating to the public school system, including certain
provisions applicable as well to private and parochial
schools; amending, revising, consolidating and changing the
laws relating thereto," providing for higher education
accountability and transparency.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. The act of March 10, 1949 (P.L.30, No.14), known
as the Public School Code of 1949, is amended by adding an
article to read:
ARTICLE XX-H
HIGHER EDUCATION ACCOUNTABILITY
AND TRANSPARENCY
Section 2001-H. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this article
shall have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Department." The Department of Education of the
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Commonwealth.
"Graduation rates." The percentages of full-time
undergraduate students enrolled for credit toward a degree,
diploma, certificate or other formal credential who are awarded
a degree, diploma or certificate within each of the following:
(1) 100% of the normal completion time for the student's
program.
(2) 125% of the normal completion time for the student's
program.
(3) 150% of the normal completion time for the student's
program.
"Institution of higher education." The term includes any of
the following:
(1) A community college operating under Article XIX-A.
(2) A university within the State System of Higher
Education.
(3) The Pennsylvania State University, the University of
Pittsburgh, Temple University, Lincoln University or any
other institution designated as State-related by the
Commonwealth.
(4) The Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology.
(5) An institution of higher education which is operated
not for profit, located in and incorporated or chartered by
the Commonwealth and entitled to confer degrees as set forth
in 24 Pa.C.S. ยง 6505 (relating to power to confer degrees)
and is designated as a "college" or "university" as provided
for by the standards and qualifications prescribed by the
State Board of Education under 24 Pa.C.S. Ch. 65 (relating to
private colleges, universities and seminaries).
(6) A private school licensed under the act of December
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15, 1986 (P.L.1585, No.174), known as the Private Licensed
Schools Act.
"Net tuition and fees." The average total cost of attendance
minus the average amount of grant or scholarship aid awarded to
a first-time, full-time undergraduate student enrolled for
credit toward a degree, diploma, certificate or other formal
credential from the Federal Government, the Commonwealth or the
institution of higher education.
"PHEAA." The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance
Agency.
"Retention rate." The percentage of first-year, full-time
undergraduate students enrolled for credit toward a degree,
diploma, certificate or other formal credential who continue to
be enrolled at an institution of higher education in the
following school year.
"Total debt." The average per-student cumulative principal
borrowed from a loan program, including Federal and State loan
programs, institutional loans and private alternate loans made
by a bank or lender.
Section 2002-H. Comparison tool.
(a) Duty of department.--The department shall make available
on the department's publicly accessible Internet website a
search tool that allows an individual to compare institutions of
higher education that meet certain criteria selected by the
individual, including the offering of a particular major or
program of study.
(b) Requirements.--The comparison tool required under this
section must:
(1) Be accessible from the department's publicly
accessible Internet website.
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(2) Allow a user to identify and compare institutions of
higher education by the following :
(i) Programs of study available.
(ii) Name.
(iii) Physical address.
(iv) Total enrollment for the previous academic
year.
(v) Net tuition and fees per year based on the
previous academic year.
(vi) Percentages of students receiving:
(A) Pell grants.
(B) Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity
grants.
(C) Academic Competitiveness grants.
(D) National Science and Mathematics Access to
Retain Talent grants.
(E) Teacher Education Assistance for College and
Higher Education grants.
(vii) Average total debt borrowed for undergraduate
study.
(viii) Graduation and retention rates, including
information on average time, in years, to attainment of a
degree, diploma, certificate or other formal credential
for a full-time student.
(ix) Percentage of undergraduate students who have
defaulted on their Federal student loans within three
years of entering repayment.
(3) Be accessible to the public without requiring
registration or use of a user name, password or other user
identification.
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(4) I nclude a link to the publicly accessible Internet
website of the Department of Labor and Industry and a link to
the publicly accessible Internet website of each of the
institutions of higher education selected .
(5) Include a direct link to the High Priority
Occupations publicly accessible Internet website of the
Department of Labor and Industry with a description of what
high priority occupations are and how they are identified.
(c) Chart.--The comparison tool required under this section
must generate a comparison chart in a grid format that:
(1) Lists the institutions of higher education that
match a user's search criteria.
(2) Provides information for each institution of higher
education listed as outlined in subsection (b)(2).
(d) Duty of institutions.--Each institution of higher
education shall provide the information listed in this section,
as available, to the department not later than January 1 of each
year. If the information required under this subsection is
available in an institution of higher education's Integrated
Postsecondary Education Data System report, the institution of
higher education may comply with the reporting requirements of
this subsection by sending an electronic copy of the Integrated
Postsecondary Education Data System report to the department.
The department shall update the comparison tool as soon as
practicable after receiving information from each institution of
higher education.
(e) The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency
shall include a link on its publicly accessible Internet website
to the comparison tool required under this section.
Section 2. This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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